The two new Pokémon: Let's Go games are designed to connect to Pokémon Go on the iPhone and other mobile devices and offer many of the gameplay functions that are available in Pokémon Go.
Players will be able to catch Pokémon using Pokémon Go on iOS or Android and then transfer those Pokémon over to the switch. Any of the original 151 Pokémon from the Kanto region can be transferred over to the Switch using Bluetooth.
As demonstrated in the video accompanying the announcement, a player captures a Dratini on a smartphone and then pulls out a Switch to transfer the Dratini to something called the "GO PARK" where the player is able to interact with the Pokémon.
The video also shows a Nintendo Switch user sending a present to a Pokémon Go player on an Android device, suggesting gifts will also be able to be exchanged cross device.
Pokémon Let's Go gameplay was inspired by Pokémon Yellow, where Pikachu followed the player throughout the game, and The Pokémon Company says the two games are designed for players "taking their first steps into the Pokémon video game world."
"With the launch of Pokémon GO in 2016 and the global sensation that ensued, millions of new players were introduced to the world of Pokémon," said Junichi Masuda, director at GAME FREAK inc. "For many people, Pokémon GO was their first experience with the Pokémon brand, so we have crafted these two new titles to be an accessible entry point to our core RPG series while giving our longtime fans a new way to play Pokémon."
Gameplay in Pokémon Let's Go, as with other Pokémon games, consists of capturing, leveling, and fighting Pokémon. Local multiplayer gameplay is supported, with two Pokémon catchers able to team up to catch Pokémon.
The Pokémon Company says that in addition to integration with Pokémon Go on Switch, "something special" will be coming to the world of Pokémon Go in the future "making the connection between both games even more appealing for trainers."
Pokémon Let's Go for the Switch will be accompanied by a new Poké Ball Plus accessory that can be used in lieu of a standard Nintendo Switch controller for capturing and interacting with Pokémon. The Poké Ball Plus is also compatible with Pokémon Go and can be used to catch Pokémon instead of the existing Pokémon Go Plus accessory.
The Poké Ball Plus offers motion controls and it lights up, vibrates, and plays sounds. Players who capture a Pokémon using the Poké Ball Plus will be able to feel it move around inside the ball.
Pokémon: Let's Go, Eevee! and Pokémon: Let's Go Pikachu! will be released on November 16, 2018. The Poké Ball Plus will be available for purchase at retailers on the same day.
Nintendo today also launched a new free-to-play game on the Nintendo Switch called Pokémon Quest, which is coming to mobile devices in late June.
Pokémon Quest, an RPG developed by Game Freak, is set in Tumblecube Island, where everything is a cube, including Pokémon. The idea is to travel through the island hunting for treasure, capturing Pokémon, discovering new areas, decorating a base camp, and more.